When our children were 5, 7 and 8, they began weekly lessons on our keyboard “piano”. A sweet friend agreed to come to our home and give each child a 20 minute lesson. Making sure each child practiced 20 minutes several days a week was my role. They loved Miss Amy. Practice was a different story. So, before anyone could play a tune – or before Momma threw out the keyboard having lost her mind, lessons ended.
At ages 7, 9 and 10, our children were in new schools in a new city. Before and after the move, praying for new friends for them weighed on my heart. Thankfully, each had a sport team which provided peers and fun, but real buddies seemed elusive.
A year passed. We had an old guitar and Terrell expressed interest in it. I taught him the 4 chords I remembered and my husband did the same. Soon after, the Youth Pastor at our church started teaching him how to play. Meanwhile our son Ellison, who was often beating out a rhythm on any surface in our house, continued to ask for a drum set. When a member of our church learned this, he loaned his old set to him. In time, Ellison joined our church Worship Team. Still praying for friends, I watched the Lord fill many of our boys’ hours with these unforeseen pleasures. As much as they loved their team sports, the team didn’t come home with them.
When Cecilia was 12, we moved again. Renewing my prayer for friends, the idea to introduce her to piano surfaced. Not the answer I expected… It was, of course, God’s perfect ‘next’ for her. She was thrilled. Every day after volleyball practice, practicing piano seemed to fill a place in her. Discovering that singing was more than a fun pastime, she joined our church choir and Worship Team, passionate to be stretched and learn. In time, Ellison joined our church’s Worship Team. Terrell led worship for the Youth Group and later as he served with Young Life in college. And would you believe that later this month Cecilia is moving to Nashville, TN, to pursue her passion as a singer/songwriter?!
Many days, on electric guitar and drums, the boys would jam on our side porch. Cecilia would walk through the house belting out favorite tunes. And I loved it...because you love the things that you see give your children great pleasure.
These are highlights that span a decade—outcomes of long days of aloneness, uncertainty, trial…infused with glorious hours of encouragement, fun, discovery. Moving, especially as teens, was very hard on our kids. Not once did they complain about it. Some days the ache for them in my heart led me complain to God. My longings for my kids made so much sense to me. Ever thought that?
At each juncture of their lives, I knew what I wanted for them; God knew what each one needed. Supplying their present need would become a building block for the future that He HELD for them.
In the “meanwhile” of moving, starting over and waiting for friendships to develop, God unfolded HIS plans. Kingdom Plans. Exposing abilities, newfound pleasures and purpose. Building character. Growing deep friendship among our kids. Knitting us together as a family.
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8.28)
In the day, the month, the season or circumstance, God is always doing so much more than we can imagine. In your “meanwhiles”, step toward God. He’s right there, to hold, sustain and love you through it.